Cameras: our gains and losses

Ava Charnley, Staff writer

Cameras. These days we are all walk around with one in our pockets and it’s difficult to imagine that not being the case. But, of course, that is a relatively new phenomenon. The first cameras started as camera obscuras in ancient China and ancient Greece as a way to capture a moment. Although, the image was flipped upside-down. The first camera as we know it today was not created until 1816 by Joseph Nicéphore Niépce. Then, in 1885, photographic film was invented by George Eastman. Cameras did not have color until 1907. The year 1995 brought us the first portable digital SLR camera. In the year 2000, the Samsung Sharp had the first cell phone camera; it was released in South Korea. Human beings have been developing ways to save moments in time for years, from ancient Greece and China to the modern day.

With the ability humans have to capture every moment on their cell phones comes certain consequences, both good and bad. We can now capture these special moments, and then send them immediately to our loved ones. We can take a family photo more than once in our lifetime. We have the ability to show our children what we looked like when we were their age. We can also simply send a goofy selfie to a friend.

We also get exposed to things no one really needs to know about. Pictures of a friend’s dinner plate, every face their dog makes. And with this, everyone gets to show their life through a filter. That beautiful selfie on the beach? Yeah, taken in her bedroom and edited. And do we really need to know what someone is listening to at every given moment. Not to mention that people are living their lives through their favorite filters. That “I woke up like this” pic? Two hours of hair and makeup. Those wonderful vacation pics? Taken in front of a green screen. Everyone is now living their own altered reality as seen on their social media. “If it isn’t insta’d it didn’t happen.”

Cameras allow us to capture and relive moments in time forever. This tool has been fine tuned for generations by our predecessors so it could always be in arms’ reach. Even now it is being fine tuned to an even further degree with megapixels and new settings and modes for better quality pictures. Always remember, though, the camera is merely a tool. It is up to us to decide what to do with it and what moments we want to keep forever.